16 April – 20 April

16 April

The FTSE 100 is down nearly 1 per cent today in reaction to a fall in oil prices and a strong pound.

Momentum in the global economy has peaked and risks ranging from higher inflation to trade disputes and debt appear likely to taint prospects for 2018, according to the tracking index compiled by the Brookings Institution think-tank and the Financial Times.

Lower taxes and higher interest rates have helped Bank of America reach an important threshold for profitability for the first time in seven years, the latest sign that the industry bellwether has put its post-crisis malaise behind it.

For more than 16 months, 21st Century Fox has been trying to buy the 61 per cent of Sky that it does not already own. Our bid reflects Fox’s proud history of investing in British creative industries and our financial support of Sky over the 28 years since we founded it. Together with Sky, we spent £700m on UK television and film production in 2016 alone.

17 April

China’s economy grew 6.8 per cent in the first quarter over the same period last year — above the government’s 6.5 per cent target — as a rebound in private investment compensated for a declining trade surplus.

Britain and the US have moved against one of China’s largest telecoms equipment makers, adding to a growing list of restrictions imposed by western governments on Chinese companies on national security grounds.

China has announced a five year timetable for easing foreign restrictions into certain manufacturing sectors. Foreign ownership caps in electric vehicle ventures, shipping and aircraft manufacturing will be abolished by the end of this year, according to China’s state planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission, while restrictions on commercial vehicles will be removed by 2020.

Aluminium hit a near seven-year high on Tuesday as the aftershocks from the US sanctions against Russian producer Rusal continued to reverberate through the markets.

18 April

Bolstered by an improving economy and a wave of listings that has drawn money from big foreign investors, Vietnam equities have racked up the best gains in Asia in the year to date, making the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange one of the world’s best performing bourses.

Egypt’s finance minister said the government was committed to pushing ahead with painful economic reforms as it aimed to narrow its hefty fiscal deficit and reduce soaring debt levels.

Chinese asset manager Huarong halted trading of its Hong Kong-listed shares on Wednesday after its chairman was placed under investigation by the Chinese Communist party’s anti-corruption agency.

Shares of Continental dropped 4.5 per cent on Wednesday after the car parts supplier downgraded its full-year operating margins forecast as a result of “exchange rate and inventory valuation effects.”

19 April

Powered by a surge in the price of oil, shares in ExxonMobil seem poised for a comeback.

Oil prices hit their highest level since 2014 on Thursday, moving above $74 a barrel and lifting energy companies to the top of global stock indices.

Energy stocks glowed on Thursday in Asia after a bigger than expected fall in US supplies sparked a rally in oil prices overnight.

Facebook has taken the first steps towards designing its own chips, in the latest sign of how the rise of AI is shifting the focus of competition in the tech world.

20 April

The world economy will enjoy two years of abundance and it is all thanks to Donald Trump. That was the gist of this week’s forecasts from the IMF, dominated as they were by the US president’s tax cuts and their inevitable consequence: a big rise in the US current account deficit. The president who hates trade deficits is about to increase them massively. Managing the consequences will be a big challenge for the global economy.

The Trump administration is considering declaring a national economic emergency to impose new restrictions on Chinese investment as part of a trade crackdown on Beijing, a senior US Treasury official confirmed.

Qualcomm on Thursday disclosed that it was cutting 1,500 jobs across its California offices as part of a plan to reduce annual costs by $1bn.

A potential battle for control of Shire broke into the open on Thursday after the Irish drugmaker rejected a £42.4bn takeover offer from Japanese rival Takeda and Botox-maker Allergan disclosed it had considered a run at the company.